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A teenager from East Sussex who threw a road sign onto the live rails near a train station, causing an explosion has been handed a 12 month Referral Order.
The 17 year old from Portslade, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was sentenced after admitting endangering safety over the incident in September.
CCTV footage showed the teenager carrying the sign onto a bridge before throwing it onto the tracks near Fishergate Station. It caused a shower of sparks as it connected with the live rail.
The act caused damage to tracks estimated at between £8,000 and £10,000.
PC Paul Gardner, the investigating officer, said: “The teenager’s actions, carried out for no apparent reason, damaged the tracks and saw the railway line blocked for the best part of an hour while emergency repairs were carried out by Network Rail engineers.
“It was sheer luck that no trains were passing through the area at the time, but we may not be so fortunate if this happens again.”
Nicola Dooris, community safety manager at Network Rail, said: “This sort of mindless vandalism is dangerous, disruptive and diverts large amounts of money away from improving the railway in order to fix the damage it causes.”